The Kremlin has issued a stark warning, labeling any further United States aid to Ukraine as a “fiasco”. This meeting comes at a critical juncture, with Ukraine seeking continued military support amid its ongoing conflict with Russia.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, speaking at a news conference in Moscow, expressed skepticism about the effectiveness of US assistance to Ukraine.
“The tens of billions of dollars pumped into Ukraine did not help it gain success on the battlefield,” Peskov stated, suggesting that additional funding would meet the same fate.Meanwhile, Zelenskyy’s visit to the US is seen as a crucial appeal to American lawmakers to sustain military aid. His itinerary includes meetings at the White House and Capitol Hill, coinciding with Biden's proposal for billions in additional aid for Ukraine and Israel.
However, this request faces significant challenges in Congress, with the potential for collapse looming. Peskov further remarked that the outcome of the Biden-Zelenskyy meeting is unlikely to impact the situation on the ground in Ukraine or the progression of Russia’s “special military operation” in the country.
He also commented on the diminishing authority of Zelenskyy, attributing it to his government's “failures” in the war.
Challenges in Congress and Zelenskyy’s Warning
The backdrop of these high-level discussions is the increasing reluctance among some US lawmakers to provide unchecked support for Ukraine.
Last week, Republicans blocked the aid plan following a classified briefing on Ukraine, amidst demands for reforms at the US-Mexico border. This resistance stems from concerns about issuing a “blank cheque” to Ukraine.
Despite previous approvals of over $110 billion in security assistance for Ukraine since Russia's invasion, new funds have been stalled since the Republican Party gained a majority in the House of Representatives in January.
Addressing soldiers at the National Defense University in Washington, DC, Zelenskyy warned that waning support for Ukraine would benefit Russian President Vladimir Putin.
“If there’s anyone inspired by unresolved issues on Capitol Hill, it’s just Putin and his sick clique,” he cautioned, emphasizing the geopolitical stakes of the US’s support.